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RFID in the contemporary supply chain: multiple perspectives on its benefits and risks

Alan R. Cannon (Department of Information Systems & Operations Management, College of Business Administration, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)
Pedro M. Reyes (Hankamer School of Business, Baylor University, Waco, Texas, USA)
Gregory V. Frazier (Department of Information Systems & Operations Management, College of Business Administration, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)
Edmund L. Prater (Department of Information Systems & Operations Management, College of Business Administration, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)

International Journal of Operations & Production Management

ISSN: 0144-3577

Article publication date: 25 April 2008

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to point to established theory bases from other disciplines that may be used to illustrate the benefits, complexities and risks accompanying the adoption of radio‐frequency identification (RFID) technology.

Design/methodology/approach

Three theory streams are explored with respect to RFID adoption at two levels: the level of the tagged unit; and the level of the adopting firm. Each theory stream is evaluated specifically with respect to RFID, and research questions are proposed.

Findings

A variety of theoretical disciplines bring to light tension between uncertainty that spurs RFID adoption and uncertainty that accompanies RFID adoption.

Practical implications

Insights are provided for managers wrestling with: the question of whether and/or how to adopt RFID; or concerns regarding the implications of their decision to adopt RFID. In addition, the theory bases explored in this research offer guidance regarding risks that accompany RFID adoption but are not commonly considered.

Originality/value

For those contemplating adoption of, or research into, RFID technology, the paper offers a detailed synthesis of valuable theory streams, as well as promising research questions.

Keywords

Citation

Cannon, A.R., Reyes, P.M., Frazier, G.V. and Prater, E.L. (2008), "RFID in the contemporary supply chain: multiple perspectives on its benefits and risks", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 28 No. 5, pp. 433-454. https://doi.org/10.1108/01443570810867196

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited